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Romani people living on welfare in Great Britain

Updated on January 3, 2017
Ion Lazar
Ion Lazar

Rehabilitation of the building cost £ 2,500

Ion Lazar, aged 36, from the village of Argetoaia, in Dolj county, said that he fully renovated his house with money received as welfare in Britain. The man was working in construction and collecting scrap.

Maria Lazar, aged 33, says that her husband went to work abroad when were lifted the labor market restrictions for Romania. She recognizes that Ion Lazar send money home to their three children, and in one year managed to collect the sum of £ 2,500 for the rehabilitation of the building.

"It was an old house, and my husband raised the money needed to fix it. I know that he is working there in construction or is collecting scrap. I do not know if he takes welfare. He never told me anything. If he had not gone, it would be worse for us. Living only on our children's allowance we were in danger of dying from starvation. There are months when he send home £ 300. State of Romania does not want to give us welfare for one reason: we had insulated glazing windows. My husband managed to buy a van and a plasma", said his wife.

Ion Lazar's new van
Ion Lazar's new van

Ion Lazar hopes to make £ 60,000 or even more in the next 2-3 years

Ion Lazar said that it is very easy to get welfare in England. "It gives me a free house, gives me money, give me everything. I am very happy because I made money in England. What can you say - thank England, they helped me. I have everything I need right now. I think in two or three years I will make £ 60,000, maybe more", says Lazar now.

Neighbors of the man who claims that has renovated his house with the money received as welfare in England said that they do not know exactly what is he doing abroad. "They were poor before him leaving for England. He succeeded in two years to rebuild his house and bought a car. It is obvious that their financial situation has improved. Here in the village Argetoaia you had nothing to do. Their house was not finished and I know that they were living in one room. Now they had bathroom, kitchen and two bedrooms", said their neighbour, Aurelia Căpăţână, aged 67 years.

Maria Lazar in front of their new house
Maria Lazar in front of their new house

In their village over 60% of inhabitants are working abroad

Maria Lazar also said that her husband will be home for the holidays with his family. He promised to the children that he will bring many gifts, and since he went to England he kept his word when he promised something. "I've been in England, but I did not find work. He does not have any legal contract documents there. We have nothing to do", said the woman.

In Argetoaia village are 4382 inhabitants, and over 60% are working abroad. "In our village we have nowhere to work. Rather than starving in your country better go away from home. Ion Lazar managed to renovate his house, and I know that his whole family is better now. He left the country for 3 years and it is clear that they have now some money. He never told me where he is working, but I didn't asked him", said Florin Eugen, a neighbor, aged 45 years.


Roma in Green Park, London

Other Roma who have made their home in Green Park are people that claim that they are coming from Bucharest, Romania. In this park was established a real Roma camp who sleep there at night and beg during day. They sleep at night in Green Park, and in the morning, while the British are heading to their jobs, Roma wash in nearby fountains and sit with cigarettes and coffee on the banks of the park.


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    • Romanian profile image

      Nicu 3 years ago from Oradea, Romania

      @Nell Rose , I understand you, many of these people are doing the same in Romania

      @colorfulone , that's why European Union was made, so people can chose where to work much easier, it's a very good thing.

    • colorfulone profile image

      Susie Lehto 3 years ago from Minnesota

      It is good that people can go to England and get help and find work.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      I totally agree with what alan said, it makes us so mad that our government hands out free money and housing to people who come into our country who have never paid tax or anything else!

    • Romanian profile image

      Nicu 3 years ago from Oradea, Romania

      alancaster149 , thanks for your comment. Now after reading your comment I understand why euroscepticism is rising in UK.

    • alancaster149 profile image

      Alan R Lancaster 3 years ago from Forest Gate, London E7, U K (ex-pat Yorkshire)

      This is no laughing matter, Nicu. We have an overstretched health service, property prices spiral so responsible young people with jobs can't afford to buy and renting amounts to over 60% of couples' income so they can't afford to raise a family. We have enough home-born spongers on welfare, a growing proportion of the population register clinically obese and Strasbourg says we're not allowed to control immigration.

      Everybody wants to come here, because the welfare service is a doddle for those determined enough to fiddle the system, although the honest are unable to claim. When I was unemployed I was told I only qualified for Jobseeker's Allowance because I was in my own property.

      As a pensioner I pay tax on two private pensions, although my total income amounts to just over £1,000 monthly, over the year that amounts to £12,000 and tax is payable over £10,500. I pay Council Tax on my property @ £124 monthly, water at £45, electricity @ £82, gas @ £15. I can't afford the cost of installing central heating and the house needs work.

      I don't want to see outsiders - not even better-off ones from France or Germany - come in and get benefits I don't qualify for because, quote, "We earn too much between us", my wife and I. We've been paying our younger two through university to better the country's prospects in a competitive world.

      I don't hold it against you personally, but I don't need reminding we're a 'soft touch'. Mind you, many Poles are going back because the situation's improved considerably there. We've still got Russians, Lithuanians, Latvians, Ukrainians, Somalis, other Africans, West Indians, Indians, Pakistanis, Sri Lankans, some Russians, Bulgarians, Italians from before and after WWII AS WELL AS many from Commonwealth countries. The UK also pays out £billions in aid to Africa and Asia when their leaders 'squirrel away' the money into their Swiss bank accounts and build luxurious palaces or missiles (we still pay aid to India and Pakistan, believe it or not, and they don't improve living conditions with it, they just increase their nuclear arsenals).

      Can you wonder at UKIP's success at the polls?